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Blacksquare absolute fund recovers ground

Blacksquare Capital’s diversified absolute return fund is recovering lost ground following a difficult period last year which started with the extreme market volatility in August.

The fund was up by 2.32 per cent last month, building on gains made in January, bringing year-to-date returns up to around 4.84 per cent.

The firm says nine of its 10 underlying managers produced positive returns last month, helped by the recovery in risk assets such as equities.

It says the portfolio is generating the type of returns expected in this type of environment and that it suffered losses after the market turbulence last August because it had too much exposure to risk assets and did not reduce risk quickly enough.

The fund lost 7.94 per cent in August followed by a 4.05 per cent loss in September. It gained 1.38 per cent in October but fell by 2.66 per cent in November and lost 1 per cent in December.

Blacksquare says it is pleased with the fund’s more recent performance and points out that because of the way it is built, with each underlying fund having low correlation to the other holdings, there should never be a month when all the underlying managers generate positive returns.

Chief executive Christopher Peel says: “The managers we look at may tread the same markets but the correlation of returns is low. That is how fund of fund managers can add value.”


Philip Jenks appointed as non-exec of Leeds

Leeds Building Society has appointed Philip Jenks as a non-executive director. Jenks is currently a specialist adviser to the Housing Finance Select Committee. During his career he has held senior positions at Halifax Mortgages and was head of mortgage strategy and development at HBOS, where he became chief operating officer, mortgages. Jenks says: “I am […]


FSA fines Coutts £8.8m for anti-money laundering failures

The FSA has fined Coutts & Company £8.8m over anti-money laundering systems and controls failures. The regulator says the failings related to high risk customers, were “serious and systemic”, and were allowed to persist for almost three years. The FSA visited Coutts in October 2010 as part of its thematic review into banks’ management of […]


Accord to allow brokers to upload documents

Accord Mortgages is to allow brokers to upload documents for mortgage applications from tomorrow. Intermediaries will be able to securely attach documents straight to the case they apply to as part of an update to its mortgage application tracking system The new system will also see Accord remind brokers about outstanding paperwork to help keep […]

The Technical Quiz- March 29

To help you to keep up with the fundamentals of tax, retirement and financial planning, try answering these five questions. QUESTION 1 What is the maximum income tax relief, in terms of tax, that an individual can claim from an investment in EIS shares in 2012/13? A) 20% of £500,000 = £100,000 B) 20% of […]


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